Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Sep 16, 2023.
WarningFor all patients taking this medicine:
- Drugs like this one have raised the chance of suicidal thoughts or actions in children and young adults. The risk may be greater in people who have had these thoughts or actions in the past. All people who take Norpramin (desipramine) need to be watched closely. Call the doctor right away if signs like low mood (depression), nervousness, restlessness, grouchiness, panic attacks, or changes in mood or actions are new or worse. Call the doctor right away if any thoughts or actions of suicide occur.
- This medicine is not approved for use in children. However, the doctor may decide the benefits of taking Norpramin (desipramine) outweigh the risks. If your child has been given Norpramin (desipramine), ask the doctor for information about the benefits and risks. Talk with the doctor if you have questions about giving Norpramin (desipramine) to your child.
Uses of Norpramin:
- It is used to treat low mood (depression).
- It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Norpramin?
- If you have an allergy to desipramine or any other part of Norpramin (desipramine).
- If you are allergic to Norpramin (desipramine); any part of Norpramin (desipramine); or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
- If you have had a recent heart attack.
- If you are taking any of these drugs: Linezolid or methylene blue.
- If you have taken certain drugs for depression or Parkinson's disease in the last 14 days. This includes isocarboxazid, phenelzine, tranylcypromine, selegiline, or rasagiline. Very high blood pressure may happen.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Norpramin (desipramine).
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Norpramin (desipramine) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Norpramin?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take Norpramin (desipramine). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Norpramin (desipramine) affects you.
- To lower the chance of feeling dizzy or passing out, rise slowly if you have been sitting or lying down. Be careful going up and down stairs.
- It may take a few weeks to see the full effect.
- Talk with your doctor before you drink alcohol or use other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
- High or low blood sugar may happen in some patients after Norpramin (desipramine) is given. Talk with the doctor.
- Check your blood sugar as you have been told by your doctor.
- Tell your doctor if you have signs of high or low blood sugar like breath that smells like fruit, dizziness, fast breathing, fast heartbeat, feeling confused, feeling sleepy, feeling weak, flushing, headache, more thirsty or hungry, passing urine more often, shaking, or sweating.
- This medicine may make you sunburn more easily. Use care if you will be in the sun. Tell your doctor if you sunburn easily while taking this drug.
- Call your doctor right away if you have signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
- Some people may have a higher chance of eye problems with Norpramin (desipramine). Your doctor may want you to have an eye exam to see if you have a higher chance of these eye problems. Call your doctor right away if you have eye pain, change in eyesight, or swelling or redness in or around the eye.
- An unsafe heartbeat that is not normal (long QT on ECG) has happened with Norpramin (desipramine). Sudden deaths have rarely happened in people taking Norpramin (desipramine). Talk with the doctor.
- A very bad and sometimes deadly health problem called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) may happen. Call your doctor right away if you have any fever, muscle cramps or stiffness, dizziness, very bad headache, confusion, change in thinking, fast heartbeat, heartbeat that does not feel normal, or are sweating a lot.
- Be careful in hot weather or while being active. Drink lots of fluids to stop fluid loss.
- If you are 65 or older, use Norpramin (desipramine) with care. You could have more side effects.
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan on getting pregnant, or are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks to you and the baby.
How is this medicine (Norpramin) best taken?
Use Norpramin (desipramine) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- Keep taking Norpramin (desipramine) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
- Do not stop taking Norpramin (desipramine) all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of side effects. If you need to stop Norpramin (desipramine), you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of high or low blood pressure like very bad headache or dizziness, passing out, or change in eyesight.
- Feeling confused.
- Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
- Trouble sleeping.
- Bad dreams.
- Trouble passing urine.
- Passing urine more often.
- Fever, chills, or sore throat; any unexplained bruising or bleeding; or feeling very tired or weak.
- Chest pain or pressure.
- Fast or abnormal heartbeat.
- Weakness on 1 side of the body, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, drooping on one side of the face, or blurred eyesight.
- A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
- Shakiness, trouble moving around, or stiffness.
- Ringing in ears.
- Enlarged breasts.
- Nipple discharge.
- Sex problems like lowered interest in sex or ejaculation problems.
- A severe and sometimes deadly problem called serotonin syndrome may happen. The risk may be greater if you also take certain other drugs. Call your doctor right away if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; severe diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or very bad headache.
What are some other side effects of Norpramin?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Feeling dizzy, sleepy, tired, or weak.
- Constipation, diarrhea, stomach pain, upset stomach, throwing up, or feeling less hungry.
- Dry mouth.
- Hair loss.
- Change in taste.
- Stomach cramps.
- Mouth irritation or mouth sores.
- Weight gain or loss.
- Sweating a lot.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at https://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Norpramin?
- Store at room temperature.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Protect from heat.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time Norpramin (desipramine) is refilled. If you have any questions about Norpramin (desipramine), please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
More about Norpramin (desipramine)
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- Dosage information
- During pregnancy
- Generic availability
- Drug class: tricyclic antidepressants
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